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If you had to name a vehicle that you consider to be one of the monstrous driving beasts of all time, the Hummer would probably make your top 10. Now imagine the human, Hollywood version of that same beast. You might name Arnold Schwarzenegger.

What some may not know is that both the Hummer and Schwarzenegger have a unique bond. Both are famous for being behemoths in their respective spaces. However, Schwarzenegger played a significant role in bringing the Hummer to life. Even more intriguing is realizing the Terminator actor was also the very first person to own both an electric (EV) and gas variation of the famous off-road SUV.

How Arnold Schwarzenegger brought the Hummer to the U.S.

California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger in front of the new Hummer H3 at the Society of Automotive Engineers World Congress in Detroit, Michigan, in 2009
Arnold Schwarzenegger in front of a Hummer H3 | Bill Pugliano/Getty Images

It makes sense that the most masculine Hollywood star owns a few of the most masculine SUVs ever built. However, as Vox recounts the tale, it was Arnold Schwarzenegger who saw an automotive business opportunity and pounced, bringing the Hummer to America. 

It was 1990, and Schwarzenegger was on set shooting Kindergarten Cop. While the film itself didn’t turn out to be a blockbuster hit like so many of his others, it did provide the rare opportunity for a pack of Humvees to drive by the set as part of an army convoy. Schwarzenegger was ecstatic about the machine. In fact, he contacted AM General, the company responsible for producing the Humvee, to insist the automaker introduce a consumer version. 

It was this conversation that led to the Hummer coming to market for everyday driving. Despite the company’s hesitation to launch, fearing it wouldn’t sell well, the Hummer stepped on the U.S. consumer stage in 1992.

Schwarzenegger owned the first gas and electric Hummers

AM General’s Hummer H1 was a success among celebrities upon its release. Additionally, considering he played such an advocate role in bringing the Hummer to consumers, it only makes sense Arnold Schwarzenegger received the first gas Hummer H1 in 1992, according to History. You can watch him receive his set of Hummer keys on YouTube. The 10,000-pound, 10 mpg beastly ride would be the first of many in the actor’s personal collection. 

Schwarzenegger’s love of Hummers wasn’t done with the H1. General Motors later went on to secure the rights from AM General to market and distribute what would be the Hummer H2 in 2002. This smaller, more affordable version of the original beast went over even better among consumers who didn’t mind paying a little extra at the pump to drive them.

Fast forward to 2017, and Schwarzenegger decided he would convert one of his beloved Hummers into an EV variation. By then, fuel prices were higher, but it probably wasn’t a cost of ownership decision for Schwarzenegger. He wanted to innovate and teamed up with Kreisel Electric to introduce the very first all-electric Hummer H1, according to Drive Tribe. His primary inspiration for the conversion was his initiative toward clean energy living.

Arnold Schwarzenegger’s EV Hummer came with a 100-kWh battery that provided a driving range of about 185 miles. It featured two electric motors per axle to power the all-wheel drive platform. Overall, this monster SUV can produce 483 horsepower and reach top speeds of 75 mph. 

The actor has a collection of Hummers (new and old)


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Arnold Schwarzenegger continues to add to his collection of Hummers and loves them to this day. He even inspired ad all-electric version long before General Motors even considered mass production plans just shows how dedicated to this vehicle the Hollywood actor really is. Now that GM does officially have electric versions of the SUV in the works, including the GMC Hummer EV SUV and truck, fans expect Schwarzenegger will likely jump in to scoop those up for his collection, too. Larger than life in size and fame, the Hummer and Arnold Schwarzenegger seem to be a match made in heaven.